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Report No. 37

191. Section 54 and communication of grounds.-

With reference to section 54, the suggestion of a State Government1 to give to the arrested person full particulars of the offence for which the arrest is made,2-4 has appealed to us. But we do not think that a writing is necessary. A suitable provision on the subject is recommended.5

There is a somewhat similar provision in section 80, which is confined to arrest under warrant.6

1. F. 3(2)/55-L.C., Pt. II, S. No. 33.

2. Cf. Article 22(1) of the Constitution.

3. See also Madhu Limaye v. State, AIR 1959 Punj 506.

4. As to English Law, see (i) Archbold Criminal Pleading etc., (1966), para. 2809. (ii) Cwristie v. Lycainsky, (1947).

5. AC 573: (1947)1 All ER 567 (HL).

6. As to section 46, see Q.E. v. Basanta Lal, 4 CWN 311 and comment thereon in 8 CWN (Journal) 298.

192. The law of arrest without warrant was considered at length in England in a judgment of the House of Lords. The propositions relevant for the present purpose may be quoted from that judgment:-1

"(1) If a policeman arrests without warrant on reasonable suspicion of felony, or of other crime of a sort which does not require a warrant, he must in ordinary circumstances inform the person arrested of the true ground of arrest. He is not entitled to keep the reasons to himself or to give a reason which is not the true reason. In other words, a citizen is entitled to know on what charge or on suspicion of what crime he is seized.2 (2) If the citizen is not so informed, but is nevertheless seized, the constable, apart from certain exceptions, is liable for false imprisonment."

1. Christie v. Leachinsky, (1947) AC 573 (586, 587): (1947) 1 All ER 567 ( 572, 573) (HL).

2. Christie v. Leachinsky, 1947 AC 573 (586, 587): (1947) 1 All ER 567 ( 572, 573) (HL).

193. Section 54 and arrest beyond jurisdiction.-

With reference to section 54, a question regarding a police officer's power to effect an arrest beyond his jurisdiction, has been raised by the Inspector-General of Police, Orissa in his suggestion on the Code.1

The assumption that a police officer can, under the present law, effect an arrest beyond his jurisdiction in another State, (which is made in the suggestion), may not be correct. A police officer's powers are ordinarily limited to the general police district, under the Police Act.2 Apart from special provisions (such as section 58 of the Code of Criminal Procedure), he cannot exercise powers beyond the general police district. This is the position, and no amendment thereof is necessary. We do not think that it is necessary (as has been suggested by the Inspector-General of Police, Orissa) to insert a provision as follows:

"A Police Officer authorised to arrest under this section may effect the arrest at places beyond the jurisdiction of the Police Station to which he is attached, but should generally do so with the knowledge of the local police."

1. F. 27(3)/55-Judl. H (Home Ministry File), Appendix I, Item 9.

2. See section 22, Police Act, 1861.

194. Section 54 and recording reasons for arrest.-

It has been suggested,1 that the reasons for arrest by a police officer, should be recorded. This would not be practicable, in our opinion, and the suggestion cannot, therefore, be accepted.

1. F. 3(2)/55-L.C., Pt. II , S. No. 20.

195. Section 55.-

Under section 55, the following points have been considered:-

(i) It is unnecessary to replace the words "in the like manner" by the words "without an order from a Magistrate and without a warrant". That, no doubt, is the meaning,1 but it is unnecessary to disturb the language.

(ii) In clause (c), it is unnecessary to add the words "within the limits of such station" which appear in section 55(a) and in section 55(b). The omission of these words in clause (c) may not necessarily be inadvertent.

(iii) For the words "fear for injury", the words "fear of injury" may be substituted.

In section 55, certain other changes are desirable, in view of the changes proposed in section 109(a).2

1. Nepal, ILR 35 All 407.

2. See discussion relating to section 109(a).

196. Section 55(1)(b).-

It has been suggested1-2 that section 55(1)(b) should be deleted. We are unable to accept the suggestion. Properly construed, section 55(1)(b) is not meant to deal with a mere case of poverty. It is a power vested in high police officers for purposes of arresting and sending up persons suspected of living by unlawful means.

1. F. 27(5)/54-Judl. (Home Ministry File), Appendix II, Item 5.

2. F. 27(5)/54-Judl. (Home Ministry File), Appendix III, Item 6.

197. Section 56.-

There is an apparent conflict of decisions on the relationship between sections 54 and 56.

The correct position appears to be this. Where a police officer acts on a requisition sent to him under section 56, his powers are naturally confined by section 56. But, where the police officer is in independent possession of information, and purports to act under section 54, his action is legal.1

The matter was explained at great length by the Madras High Court also.2

The amendment which we are recommending3 only re-states the law laid down in the judicial decisions as properly understood, and is intended to obviate unnecessary controversy.

1. See Sulaiman v. State of Kerala, AIR 1964 Ker 185 (Reviews case law).

2. Gurcharan Kaur v. Province of Madras, AIR 1942 Mad 539 (546).

3. See section 56 (as proposed).

198. Section 57.-

In section 57, the following points have been considered:-

(i) In sub-section (2), the words "having jurisdiction" may be added after the word "Magistrate". Compare the Bombay amendment.

(ii) In section 57(2) and in section 57(3), the word "Judicial" need not be added, as in Presidency towns the Magistrates performing judicial functions are not proposed to be described as "Judicial" Magistrates.

199. Section 58.- No change is needed in existing section 58.

200. Section 59.-

Regarding section 59, a number of points have arisen:-

(i) The question whether it is necessary to replace the words "in his view" by "in his sight or presence" was considered.1 Observations of Page J. in one case,2 that the section is not happily worded, have been noted; and the other decisions relative to these words in the section have been considered by us. We think, that no change is necessary to disturb the language.

(ii) The question whether the words "cause him to be arrested" should be added in section 59 has also been considered: In view of the case-law3 which shows an obscurity on the subject, we think that it is desirable to add these words.

1. Cf. Nazir v. Rex, AIR 1951 All 3 (FB).

2. Gouri Prasad v. Chartered Bank, ILR.52 Cal 615: AIR 1925 Cal 884 (885) (Page J.)

3. See-

(i) Nazir v. Rex, AIR 1951 All 3 (7), para. 15 (FB).

(ii) Fakiro v. Emp., AIR 1947 Sind 107 (109), para. 7.

(iii) Graham v. Henry Gidney, AIR 1933 Cal 708 (714) (Ameer Ali J.).

Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 (Sections 1-176) Back

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